You have heard that it was said…But I tell you…
The Teacher seems to be saying it is much more difficult to please God than anyone ever thought.
He raises the bar!
It isn’t just about our behavior, but what’s in our hearts!
Excuse me, but this is counterintuitive, isn’t it? Shouldn’t we expect the One who will usher in the Era of Grace to relax the standards?
After all, nobody ever managed to live up the old ones. Why increase them?
If this is the way it is, who can ever please God?
Precisely the Teacher’s point, I think.
By turning our eyes inward to the evil in our hearts, He undercuts any pretense that keeping a few rules of behavior will be enough to gain fellowship with God.
We see the startling truth. We are much farther from God than we thought. In fact, we are hopelessly distant.
The bar is too high for us. We throw up our hands. We give up.
His students are now open to receive God’s plan – A Savior for sins and a Teacher who can actually change hearts.